Picture this scene: I’m getting ready to watch myself on ABC’s Good Morning America in an hour and a half – my first ever on-camera interview. And by getting ready, I mean sitting on the couch in Katie’s new apartment, freshly showered because I’m that anxious and excited, about to be dripping in sweat from the 90 degree and painfully humid NYC weather and munching on a Kind bar because I didn’t have time to eat dinner the night before and I woke up ravenous.
I still can’t believe everything that went down last week. I successfully (eh, maybe an overstatement) moved out of my apartment Tuesday morning, got a call from Good Morning America that afternoon, did the interview that evening and then went back to my apartment with Katie to chuck all of our last-minute crap. With a broken elevator. Envision two girls in dresses and wedges, dripping sweat uncontrollably and running up and down five flights of stairs with dishes, mirrors, bins of clothes, trash, bags of food, etc. at midnight!!! It was a sight to be seen.
And we thought we were basically done moving out by the time we left for GMA in the early afternoon! Shows you how much we know about moving out of an NYC apartment. But when that door closed behind us for the last time and we left our keys sitting on the counter like our landlord had instructed us to do, we both knew it was the end of something huge for both of us. Our first year in New York, our first year out of college, our first year across the country from everything we’ve known, trying to make it in an incredible city doing what we love.
Walking away from our beloved little apartment on West 13th street could have potentially been a heartbreaking experience, because it embodies so much growth and such an amazing period of both of our lives. But instead of being sad, I felt hopeful (albeit delirious, sweating like a large pig and a little loopy from having not eaten since lunchtime). I felt hopeful for what was to come. If this last year has been this wonderful, then I can only imagine that the coming year has great things in store.
Most importantly I want to hold onto the independence I’ve gained since living in New York. I was always the kind of girl who stuck rigidly to what I believed in, and didn’t really think I had a problem saying “no” to doing things I didn’t want to do. But inevitably I still fell into a whole lot of plans that I wasn’t thrilled about, and inhabited lifestyle traits that weren’t 100% authentic to who I was. (Like drinking waayyy too much alcohol, losing time for things I adore like yoga and writing, & filling 95% of my days with socializing and letting my “me-time” slip out the window.)
My beautiful fellow health blogger Davida said something to me yesterday about NYC that totally spoke to how I’m feeling in my last few days here. She said that New York has a way of smooshing years of personal growth into one block of time, turning the whole thing into a total mind-f*ck in the best way possible.
In the last year I’ve built this blog, started a graduate school MFA program for creative writing (does half of a Masters count?), created TBV Cleanse Programs and TBV Apparel, I’ve written for publications that I admire and I’ve made some unbelievably great friends. I have also gotten the opportunity to live with my lifelong best friend, which might just trump everything else because it’s been so special to spend this time together after four years apart in college.
I would continue telling you what I’ve been up to for the last year, but I’ll save that for the Year in Photos post that I have been working on and am super duper excited to share with you guys. In the meantime… I want to tell you all about my GMA experience!!! And for non-newsy peeps, GMA = Good Morning America. I am still stunned shitless. (Now I can say “shitless” because I’m back on the blog and not on TV anymore. I might have had a few faux pas on tape yesterday… good thing ABC has great editors.)
Basically, I was eating lunch at Lifethyme Natural Market last Monday trying to give myself a little breaky break from moving for a little while. I decided to scroll through some emails, a dangerous task these days after my coming out post last Monday, since I am in way over my head with them and haven’t been able to get to responding to most of them yet (I am getting to them all this week and I can’t WAIT to share my thanks and love with you all for sharing your stories).
I had an email from an ABC news producer saying that they’d seen the Women’s Health article (thanks, Brettan!!!) and they were interested in covering the story. My initial reaction was, “this can’t be the actual Good Morning America. This must be their sister show or something because there’s no way this could be happening.”
I gave the producer a call and we had a really interesting chat about the slippery slope between eating healthfully and orthorexia, and my battle with food for the last year or so and eventually making the decision to leave veganism. She put me in contact with another producer in NYC and we set up an interview for the evening. Of course, I was in the middle of moving out of my apartment, so I was like where the heck am I going to have them come interview me?!?!
After going through many options (I’ll spare you the hectic details even though they’re kinda funny, will probably share eventually), we ended up doing the interview in a beautiful park uptown at sunset. The reporter was Juju Chang, ABC’s Nightline correspondent, and she was an absolute PRO. I think I fell a little bit in love with her. She is a Nor Cal girl like me and she has been living in NYC for 25 years… and she has even won Emmys for her work! She was astounding and made me feel so comfortable on camera. I legitimately forgot that the cameras were rolling because we were having such great conversation.
And thank god for my trusty team of best friends – Katie and Clare, for styling me, prepping me, being there for moral support and sharing in the awesome and thrilling experience with me. I am freakishly lucky to have such supportive friends. Katie left our move-in process and agreed to finish moving our shit in the middle of the night with me, and Clare left work to hang, help me get ready and be there for the experience. Oh, and Clare was wearing her “Oh Kale Yes” shirt, which was awesome to have in the presence of ABC producers!
After the interview I went back to the studio with the producer and the camera crew to shoot some extra footage. The awesome producer Ariella casually mentioned to me that the building we were in was where they film “The View.” I died a little.
Afterward, I of course stayed up all night like the raging insomniac that I am (it didn’t help that we hadn’t installed Katie’s AC in her new apartment yet, and it was verging on 100 degrees with major humidity). I paced the apartment, took three (yes, three) ice cold showers, and started typing this post at the ripe hour of 5 a.m. By the moment the clock struck 7:45 a.m. I ran over to my friend Emily’s to start watching GMA with her. (Katie’s cable wasn’t ready yet!!!).
As we anxiously watched the screen, I couldn’t help but start thinking there was no way that they were actually going to air the segment. It couldn’t be real. Then we started seeing little clips and lead ins for it, and I knew it was happening… then next thing we knew it was playing.
ABC did a phenomenal job editing and putting together a fantastic package – I was able to touch on all of the points I most cared about, especially the orthorexia topic, as I think that is the message that needs to reach the most people. I was thrilled with it. I started hearing from my east coasters right away, and couldn’t wait for all my west coast peeps to wake up and see it!!!
Afterward I was pretty much on a high. I went to a coffee shop in the west village to start answering emails and catch up on the work I hadn’t been able to do between all the moving and the excitement. And then my phone rang… and it was Juju Chang! The reporter who had interviewed me. She said that Nightline loved the GMA segment and wanted to do a longer piece on it.
I was stunned. (Again.)
We decided that we were going to do the interview in her apartment that day, so I ran all over town like a chicken with my head cut off trying to prepare for it with about two hours to spare. And this was my LAST day in NYC… imagine my racing mind!!!
The moment I got to her Upper West Side apartment I was at ease. She is incredibly welcoming, talented and comforting in every way. We chatted, made smoothies, did a little “what I eat now vs. at the peak of my eating disorder” demo, and we set the record straight about my statement: Veganism didn’t CAUSE my eating disorder, but it certainly triggered it. That’s just me; I am certainly (in no way at all) speaking for anyone who has ever tried / will ever try a vegan diet.
I can’t wait for the Nightline segment to air. I will certainly be keeping you all posted.
After we filmed for Nightline, I had a going away party with all my besties and then got caught in a terrible thunderstorm and ended up having a cancelled flight. The flight cancellation was the hugest blessing in disguise, because I got two extra days in NYC and got to spend the fourth with all of my favorite people. Then I flew home in beautiful, sunny, non-worrisome weather.
And NOW I am back in Sactown for a few weeks before heading down to LA and then to Europe! While I am home I plan on catching up on emails, blog reading, blog posts, app development annndd starting to develop concepts for the book I am so thrilled to begin writing.
If you stuck through all of this with me, you rock. So grateful for your unbelievable support. Exciting things are coming, and I can’t wait to share with you all and continue connecting with this beautiful community.
Last week was super exciting for me — what’s one of the most exciting things that has happened to you?! Also, help me think of some recipe ideas while I do recipe development for the app this week!!!!